Review | Haken – Fauna
Inside Out Music
Seeing the fact that Haken’s last two albums, ‘Vector’ (2018) and ‘Virus’ (2020), were really awesome prog metal highlights I would rank this English sextet among the elite of the prog metal scene. So, expectations, as far as this new album ‘Fauna’ concerned were very high. After listening to Haken’s seventh studio album several times I must conclude that ‘Fauna’ is definitely not my favourite Haken album.
The two previous albums were filled with excellent compositions, featuring great melodies, gripping vocal passages and choruses and lots of breath taking instrumental highlights. Many of the songs on ‘Fauna’ are so full of musical complex variations and sometimes weird musical extravaganza that the songs completely loose their impact. ,,Nightingale” has an awesome opening but after a couple of minutes this track is ruined with riffs and hooks that sound rather random, while “Alphabet Of Me” for me, is the worst Haken song ever!
Luckily, there are also a couple of excellent songs on ‘Fauna’. Take for instance the amazing opening track ,,Taurus”, featuring heavy metal chords and a very Haken-addictive chorus! ,,Island In The Clouds”, contains a bouncing bassline/hook and some great keyboard melodies played by Peter Jones, who has returned to the fold of Haken after a fourteen-year absence. ,,Lovebite” is another extraordinary song due to the formidable chorus and the epic, clocking in over eleven minutes.
,,Elephants Never Forget”, is the highlight of this album; but then again the song never reaches the high musical level as tracks on ‘Vector’ or ‘Virus’. So, ‘Fauna’, really has some good songs but also a couple of mediocre ones and for me that is a sheer disappointment. I was hoping for an album in the veins of what Haken was doing on their previous albums. But, then again, it is only an opinion, my opinion, so check out for yourself!
Release date: 3 March 2023